It’s that time of year- spring cleaning!
At first I thought I’d just do a Kitchari only diet, but then I decidedto- why not just dive in?! This stuff is 5,000 years old, there must be something to it!
In my 200 RYT training we did a couple days of study on Ayurveda, yoga’s sister “life science.”
At the recommendation of some of my fellow trainees, I purchased “The Complete Book of Ayurvedic Home Remedies.” I like it a lot! It’s organized perfectly and doesn’t have too much stuff about herbal concoctions I won’t ever find in my city anyways. And I’m starting to get nervous excited about it. I’ll check in with you all daily and introduce a few more techniques for tidying up your temple.
DINACHARYA – Daily Routine
Wake early. In Ayurveda, it’s essential to wake up early for peace of mind. I am a Pitta, so I will be waking up at 5:30am.
Say a prayer. My normal routine is opening my eyes and immediately checking my email. This is a problem. So I have decided on theses mantras-
- Locah samastah sukhino bhavantu – May all beings everywhere be happy, healthy, and free.
- Om namah shivaya gurave satchitananda murtaye nisprapancaya santaya niralambaya tejase – I honor the luminous teacher within me and within the universe who assumes the forms of truth, consciousness, and bliss. This guiding goodness is never absent, transending limitations with a deep, abiding peace. It is the sparkling beauty that shines out through all of creation. It is the purest, most powerful light, and it is beaming its goodness within you.
The second was my teacher training (Anusara) opening invocation, and the first is a common mantra used in yoga. Both have a wide variety of translations.
Eye exercises. Blink eyes 7 times, side to side, up and down, diagonally, clockwise, and counterclockwise. This is said to help you feel alert and fresh. We’ll see…
Warm water. Warm water first thing in the morning washes the gastrointestinal tract and flushes the kidneys.
Jiva Sodhana/tongue scraping. Have you ever looked at your tongue in the morning? Gross. That layer of whatever color is toxins from your body has excreted from your saliva glands. It doesn’t seem like a good idea to just leave them there, so the instructions are to scrape from back to front 7-14 times.
Kavala Gandusha/oil pulling. This was one I’d never heard of before. Gargling oil is said to strengthen the teeth, gums, and jaws and also strengthen the voice, and remove wrinkles. The process attracts and removes bacteria, toxins, and parasites that live in your mouth or lymph system, and also pulls congestion and mucus from your throat and loosens up your sinuses. With the help of your saliva, all these scary undesirables bind with the oil, ready to be disposed of. Pulling also helps re-mineralize your teeth and strengthen your gums by thoroughly cleansing the area.
Nasal irrigation. Every day substances and pollutants enter our sinus cavities through our noses. Centuries ago the kinds of materials that entered our bodies through our nose were probably a lot less harmful that the substances that enter our body through our nose today. So- we rinse our noses! I won’t be using salt water like most do, I don’t like the taste of salt water in my throat hours after. Nasal irrigation freshens your sinus cavities and nose, especially in spring with allergens and different irritants flying around.
Ahbyanga/oil message. Before showering every day, massage your entire body with 4-5 ounces of warm oil. Oil massage improves circulation calms the mind, reduces stress, and clears excess Vata energy. And of course, the oil message makes your skin bright, soft, and supple.
- Vata- Sesame oil
- Pitta- Sunflower oil
- Kapha- Corn oil
Kitchari monodiet. This one is going to be a toughie. I love sugar, I really do. But starting monday I will have Kitchari for every meal, and nothing else. A monodiet is easier on your digestion because your body only has to produce one kind of digestive enzyme. Kitchari is known as one of the most cleansing foods in the world. It is a combination of mung beans(dal), basmati rice, spices and optional vegetables according to your dosha. It’s easy and cheap to make, similar to rice. I’m making mine in my rice cooker with just mung dal, basmati rice, spices, coconut oil, and chopped cilantro. There are many recipes specific to your dosha.
Pranayama/breathing techniques. I’ve never been good at applying these in every day life. I will be doing Kapalabhati Kriya( breath of fire) every other day, and Nadi Shodhana(alternate nostril breathing) every other day.
Meditation. 5 minutes a day is my goal.
Check back for all kinds of fun stuff-detoxifying yoga flows, more ayurvedic cleansing techniques, herbal formulas, tinctures, and juiced greens/superfood shots.